If a Story Is Viral, Truth May Be Taking a Beating
"Truth has never been an essential ingredient of viral content on the Internet. But in the stepped-up competition for readers, digital news sites are increasingly blurring the line between fact and fiction, and saying that it is all part of doing business in the rough-and-tumble world of online journalism."
This, from the world’s #1 publication that turned a single-sourced lobbyist story (the McCain/Iseman connection), into a full blown love affair, and then, (after the 2008 Presidential election), recanted/submitted---on the New York Time’s Website*---that they did not intend to imply/conclude that Senator McCain had a romantic affair or an unethical relationship:
"In February, 2009, the lawsuit was settled with no money changing hands between the parties. From the Times coverage of the settlement: "On Thursday, the two sides released a joint statement saying: 'To resolve the lawsuit, Ms. Iseman has accepted The Times’s explanation, which will appear in a Note to Readers to be published in the newspaper on Feb. 20, that the article did not state, and The Times did not intend to conclude, that Ms. Iseman had engaged in a romantic affair with Senator McCain or an unethical relationship on behalf of her clients in breach of the public trust.'....... "
No, the Times didn’t “intend to conclude”, they just wrote a story, based on one single source, a disgruntled ex-McCain employee, that suggested both an unethical and romantic affair, and then left it up to their readership to draw the untruthful conclusions. Damage done! The Times' Story took center stage just weeks before a presidential election---VIRALLY---and with little regard for reporting "the truth". And we all know who ended up "taking the beating".
*(the source for the paragraph [in quotes] about the settlement and the Time's "admission of intentions" were taken from a Wikipedia site. While Wikipedia is sometimes "a questionable" source, I found no refutable evidence that the quote published here was untruthful content of the text.)